Learn how to be a sneaker customizer from one of the best in the game. In today’s video Vick not only creates an epic Spiderman custom, but he will walk you through all the tips and tricks on how to transform sneakers with the help of paint and some stencils. Get ready, because this will be jam packed with information, expert tips and a whole lot of knowledge.

For this project we chose to use the most classic sneaker in the game; the all white Air Force 1. The Air Force 1 is not only a great staple shoe, but it is the perfect base for customizing sneakers. The first step of starting a custom might be the most important one… The prepwork! Prior to painting you have to prep the whole sneaker using acetone and cotton balls. To start you would need to remove the factory finish from the shoe, so that the paint will properly adhere to the sneaker. Next step is to use sandpaper to help the paint job adhere to the sneaker better.

With the leather material prepped it is time to move to the taping portion. You guys see Vick tape off sneakers in almost every video that he does, but this is ultimately the MOST important step! Once the sneaker is prepped and taped it is time to start working on the sneaker using paint. Painting is a process from paint matching, multiple coats, the details and more. For this custom Vick decided to hand paint the red paint to get into the crevices that he needed and also to ensure the paint went on smoothly.

Once the red paint was on it was time to move onto the air brush portion. Air brushing looks complex, but ultimately it is fairly simple to do as long as you have these steps and some control! Vick uses Angelus and Jacquard for almost EVERY custom. On the air brush side we had to pick a couple colors to get to the right shade. With the airbrush Vick opted for a gradient paint job! This section is full of different tips and tricks for the best method to air brush a sneaker.

After the gradient was laid down it was back to hand painting, but this part he had to be very careful not to ruin this sneaker. With that being said you will need a steady hand for this tip and trick. Now let’s move onto the details.

Vick uses stencils for the best custom work every time. This part requires some design, measuring and attention to detail. There are a couple different types of stencils that you can use on sneakers. You can use cut out stencils to paint over them prior to removing or there is the heat transfer vinyl. The heat transfer portion works best on the materials of insoles.

Last step of the custom was the detail portion or a tongue swap! Now not every custom needs this tip, but Vick likes to go big! Switching a tongue is just an added step and it is fairly easy if you have sewing experience.

Time to wrap up the custom with a Krylon finisher to lock in the paint job before removing the tape. Now that we wrapped up these customs you have all the tips and tricks for starting your very own customizing journey. What concept are you going to execute first?!

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00:00 Introduction to Customizing
01:05 How To Prep a Sneaker for Customization
02:32 How To Properly Tape Sneakers
05:12 How to Use Angelus Paint
06:11 How to Properly Hand- paint Sneakers
08:22 The Best Air Brush for Sneaker Customization
09:30 How to Use an Air Brush for Painting
10:43 How To Do a Gradient Paint Job
12:40 Free Hand Paint Technique
13:13 How To Use a Cricut For Stencils
14:31 How to Properly Apply Stencils to Sneakers
15:22 How to Paint using Stencils
16:57 How to Use Heat Transfer Stencils
18:02 How To Do a Tongue Swap
18:27 The Best Finisher For Painting
19:04 Finished Product

Are you interested in customizing Sneakers but don't know where to start In this video I'll be showing you four Basic processes of sneaker customizing That will always come in handy if you're New here make sure to subscribe I'm Vick Almighty and I've been restoring and Customizing sneakers for the last 14 Years in today's video I'm going to show You the four main things you need to Know as a beginner who wants to Customize shoes we have prep work which Is super important for any project we're Also going to go over painting not just With a paintbrush but with an airbrush As well third we're going to go over Stencils and lastly we're going to talk About the different finishers you need To use to lock in your work once it's All done for today's project we're going To be customizing an all-white Air Force One it's one of the most affordable and Easy bases to work with and for today's Theme it's going to be Spider-Man let's Get Started to get the project rolling we're Going to focus on the prep workk this is An important step that you got to do on Any project before you start it's a Boring one but you got to do it there is Nothing worse than ruining your custom Simply because you didn't take the extra Time to prep the shoot correctly this is Not a step you want to skip out on it

Doesn't take too long but without this The paint simply won't adhere to the Material Properly if you plan on painting on Leather you always got to start with Wiping down the leather with acetone and Cotton balls the point of this step is To remove the factory finish that's Acting as a barrier that will prevent Anything from properly adhering to the Material the more time you spend on this Step the better outcome you'll get you Only want to focus on the areas that you Plan on painting and really get into the Details and crevices because believe me It'll make a huge difference if you plan On painting an area that creases a ton Such as the toe box you definitely want To spend a good amount of time wiping That area down now now acetone could be A very harsh chemical when doing this Step you have to be in a well ventilated Area and wearing a mask to avoid Breathing in the bad fumes wearing Gloves is also super important you don't Want to get any acetone on your skin cuz That can go directly into your Bloodstream and that's not healthy good To go with the acetone I spent a solid Time minutes wiping down the entire shoe I'm pretty confident I got everything Most of the time just by doing that step Is good enough but there's other Situations where using sandpaper on top

Of using asone can further help with Wearability it can also help if you're Working on a custom that requires a lot Of layers of paint tape and a bunch of Stencils by setting down the leather to Help ensure the paint doesn't peel due To bad prep it's another easy step but I Would highly recommend to be careful as You do it I would recommend doing the Sanding with anything between 800 and 1200 grit sandpaper in a circular motion In the areas that you can stay away from All the tiny stitching on the uppers of The shoes because as soon as it makes Contact with the Sandpaper the threads Will Fray and when it's time to paint Over it it doesn't have a clean Finish leather's all prepped now there's Still one more important step when it Comes to the prep work and that is Taping taping is always needed to avoid Getting any overspray on areas you don't Want paint on now depending on the paint Job you may use less tape when Freehanding or more tape if you're Airbrushing the shoe almost every time I Work on an Air Force One one of the First thing I do is tape off the sole I Cover it up because I know I won't be Painting a Rubber Sole that the paint Typically doesn't stick on to very well Plus customizing a shoe can get messy so You don't want to get any pain on the Soles and have to waste time cleaning it

Up later once the uppers are all done And dry that's when I remove the tape From the ss pro tip to avoid using an Excessive amount of tape or wasting time You can use some paper towels to cover Up the bulk area of the shoe I like to Use the brand Scotch masing tape for my Project because it does a great job of Adhering to a lot of different materials On a shoe to make sure the edges are Fully sealed down on the tape I either Use my nail or a small pair of scissors To press down on all the tape to avoid Getting any paint leakage on areas I Covered up prep work is finally complete Now I mentioned in the beginning we're Going to be doing a Spider-Man custom When it comes to Spider-Man there is so Many variations to play with ultimately For this custom one of my favorite Movies of all time is the first Spider-Man with Toby Maguire the design For this custom is going to be the human Spider suit this see where Peter Parker Is trying to become Spider-Man with the Homemade suit and trying to get his Bread up for Mary Jane it's one of my All-time favorites just because of how Goofy the name the human spider is What's your name kid the human Spider the human spider that's it that's The best you got the design of that suit Is simple enough to put on this Air Force One plus I haven't seen anybody

Else do it on to the next stage painting Painting was one of my favorite steps When it comes to custom sneakers clean Paint jobs have a lot to do with correct Prep work taking your time and also Technique good technique isn't something You learn overnight it just takes tons Of practice before I can start working On this shoe I have to look at it and See how I want to approach it there's a Couple questions I ask myself is this Going to have to be hand painted Airbrushed or both another thing to Understand is color blocking in a Tasteful way and know where to place the Colors on the shoes since we are doing The human spider theme it's going to Consist of four different colors red Black white and blue in my head I can Already see the design for this shoe I Am going to start it off by using a Paintbrush the majority of the sneaker Is going to be red so we're going to Start there with the Spider-Man custom I'm not exactly sure were to take it I Could do a vibrant red dark red or a Light red I'm just going to grab all the Reds from Angeles and go from there this Is an acrylic Leather paint and it's Flexible and can be used on leather and Other materials now this is the majority Of the red shades that Angelus offers Now there's a couple different routes we Can take it we can mix some Reds up to

Create a different mix or we can just Pick one of these and make it easy I Think I'm going to go with the second Option this one's a pearlescent red that Has a metallic finish to it don't think I'll use that for this custom over here We got fire red it's a bit more vibrant Than regular red this was a standard red I might use this one cuz I like the tone Chili red is a bit too vibrant I don't Like this one and we got Autumn red this One's way too dark we're definitely not Going to use this one so ultimately Between these two I think I'm just going To go with the normal red this is dollar A gloss reducer when you add it to the Paint it helps eliminate the shine and Gives it a nice matte finish I'm going To add the paint to this glass jar and Put two to three drops of the dollar you Don't want to add too much of this stuff Cuz it can cause the paint to crack First color is ready to go let's lay Down with the paintbrush a couple of Pointers when it comes to using a Paintbrush you don't have to have the Most expensive paintbrush to get the Best results as you can see I'm kind of All over the place these are all really Cheap that I got in big packs from Michaels sometimes I use expensive ones But really it's all about the technique Every coat of paint you lay down has to Be thin and consistent all around at

First it may seem like you're not Getting anywhere with the amount of thin Coats of paint it takes but after a few Coats the custom should start to come Alive the point of not kicking on the Paint is to avoid breast strokes but More importantly it'll help prevent the Paint from cracking during wear just Take your time it'll pay off at the end For technique on how to use a paintbrush I like to brush on the paint with a Quick back and forth brush stroke almost Like you're Feathering on the paint and Letting the brush and your wrist do all The work when it comes to getting closer To areas that you don't want any paint On I slow it down and do my best to have A steady hand in those areas it's all About the practice when it comes to this After I lay down the first or second Coat of paint I go over the whole shoe With the heat gun on low heat to dry the Paint so I can move on to the next coat For this red color I'm expecting to have To lay down anywhere from 3 to six coats The reason why I'm doing this step with A paintbrush instead of an airbrush is Because there's a few panels including The sock liner where I don't want to get Any rep paint on sometimes doing too Much taping on the uppers can take more Time than just using a paintbrush to Freehand it occasionally the tape in Some areas won't allow the paint from

The airbrush to get in those tiny areas Where you need the paint also getting The tape to fully stick on the sock Liner material is a little tricky and Almost every time when using an airbrush There's some over spray that gets on the White liner when that happens it's Almost impossible to remove the over Spray from white fabric materials I've Done so many different paint jobs over The years but some of my top ones that I'm super proud of are my Jordan for Suns Customs inspired by the originative City Edition jerseys those took over 40 Hours to complete because of how many Different colors I had to lay down the Amount of lines and stencil work was Also insane another one I did a few Years ago was the Lego Vans same thing I Had to sit there and lay down so many Colors for the blocks the line work took Forever and the logos but I love that Custom red paint job is good to go I was Right it took about six coats to get it Fully solid it looks great I had to take My time in certain areas for example R This white sock liner was all about Taking my time there's really no way Around it in order to not get any pain On that white sock liner don't CI on any Paint on the paintbrush when you're Doing the step and have a steady hand I Also went ahead and got paint inside These little holes these are the details

That really do matter same thing all Around the stitching inside the little Holes I made sure there was enough red Paint to cover up all the white I did Get some red paint on areas that are not Supposed to be red the reason why I did So is cuz I needed to get paint on the Leather Edge I could have taken my time And not got any paint in the white Leather however I am going to be laying Down a darker shade of blue on that area So that blue should cover up that red Now the next big step you got to get Ready for is the airbrushing I'll go Over all those details in just a moment About the compressor the type of paint To use and the air brush but first we Got to do some taping we're going to Cover up everything but the soses and The back tab in this area on both sides I don't have to be perfect with the tape Job since I am going to be laying down a Different shade of blue all around However in this area on the red the tape J has got to be perfect I don't want to Get any blue paint on the red from the Airbrush if you're just starting out and Don't want to invest too much money into A brand new compressor and airbrush I Recommend using this one right here this One from Harbor Freight I started off With using this one for several years it Comes with everything you need the Compressor airbrush and hose this one

Goes for about $880 but if you're Looking for something that's a bit more High quality that's going to last a long Time I recommend using what I use every Single day and that's iada it's a good Quality compressor same thing with my Airbrush they're both from iada been Using them for years and they're still Trucking through but it's a little bit More expensive when it comes to the Compressor it's pretty straightforward It's just the on andof switch with the Pressure gauge but with the airbrush There's a little bit more to it but it's Not as complex as you may think on top You got your bowl where you pull your Paint inside back here it's usually Attached with this piece right here most Most of the time I just take it off it Kind of gets in the way of the needle The needle is what allows and stops the Paint from flowing through this tiny Little air hole where the paint comes Through on top you got your trigger when You press down and back it releases the Pressured air that helps push the paint Out of the airbrush on the tip of the Airbrush it's supposed to have this Nozzle cap without it it simply wouldn't Work and this is what helps the paint go In One Direction all right let's talk About paints again for the first part of The shoe we use Angelus red to lay down All the paint using a paintbrush now for

The airbrush you can use Angelus as well But some color you got to mix it in with Some angelous too thin to get it thin Enough to go through the airbrush in my Opinion that's a bit too much work so I Like to use jard airbrush paints this Stuff is ready to go every single time Both of these brands are really good Except I will use one for hand painting And the other one for airbrushing if You're doing both I would recommend Having both brands in Your Arsenal got All the blues lined up from jard now We're going to do the exact same thing I Did with the red paint and eliminate the Blues that I won't be using for this Project off the rip I know I'm not going To be using iridescent blue this is one Of my favorite colors however it's not Suiting for this project next we got Metallic blue same thing it's a nice Color but not for this project opaque Blue this is a good option we'll hang on To this one we got torquise blue I'm not Exactly sure how I feel about this one But we'll put this one next to the blue Transparent blue is also a good option Gallon blue is a little bit too light I'm thinking no for this one an opaque White is needed in case I want to make a Custom mixed blue got all the blues Picked out we got fluorescent blue Opaque blue and turquoise for the SSH And the back tab we're going to be

Creating a nice gradient we'll start off With a lighter blue and work our way to A darker BL blue for the first part of The SW it's going to start off with the Light blue but none of the Blues here Are the perfect color match that I want So we're going to do some mixing and Matching now the first thing we got to Do is lay down a white base coat on the Shoe all it takes is a good couple of Coats I explained how the airbrush and Compressor works but here's a few dos And don'ts for this process always spray With light even coats and slowly work Your way up that will help with a smooth Finish at the end and help with Wearability after every time you use a Color always go to the sink and run it Through some water and some airbrush Cleaner it only takes about 30 seconds Makes a big difference and it makes the Airbrush last a lot longer like I Mentioned we are going to create a nice Smooth gradient on the Su and back tab Using a lighter blue and a darker blue We're going to start out with the Lighter blue first the lighter blue is Going to go on the first half of the Swos so really we want to get this part Of the SOS fully solid before we lay Down the darker blue on the other half Airbrush paint is a little bit more Runny than regular paint so I'm usually Using the heat gun and drying the paint

After every coat to avoid a mess also You want to be at a nice distance when Spraying the paint on the shoe I'd Recommend a good 3 to 5 in away from the Shoe to avid any paint puddles and keep Moving the airbrush back and forth to Also help with that to create a gradient Paint job you always start with the Lightest color first and move on to the Darker color after that I'm going to be Mixing a little bit of black to the Current blue I just laid down to get a Darker blue you don't want to use any Tape to cover up the area you don't want Paint on because that will create a Harsh line instead start exactly where You want the grating to start and spray In that direction carefully no matter What you do don't spray in the opposite Direction of the gradient cuz that will Ruin the paint job this one's a little Bit easier because I'm just doing two Colors but for example when I when I do A gradient Sunset I start at the yellow Then work my way to Orange then red and Finish it off with a light and dark Purple it's more colors but honestly It's the exact same Process gradient paint job is fully Complete it's nice and smooth from right Here we got a nice light blue and it Transition smoothly to a dark blue and On both sides of the shoe the gradient Is nice and symmetrical let's go ahead

And take off the tape we still have These two blank panels to go but we're Back to hand painting we are going to be Using angelist paints like I mentioned If I was going to try to use the card it Simply would didn't work it's way too Thin we have a light blue on the swoosh So for this panel I'm going to go with The darker shade of blue for this part We're not going to be using any tape We're going to be freehanding it I don't Want to get any blue on the other shade Of blue or the red patience is key all Done with the color blocking everything Looks good so far now let's get into Some funner stuff one thing that really Makes a custom Stand Out is painted Logos or artwork anywhere on the sneaker To go with the concept you designed I'm Really good at Customs but I'm not good At drawing or freehanding artwork on a Shoe I'll leave that one to the pros I Like to use stencils so in this next Stage I'm going to show you how to make Stencils and how to apply them onto the Shoes to make your Customs Pop there's Different machines and programs to cut Stencils out with vinyl but my Preference because it's user friendly is A brand Cricut they have newer models Nowadays but my old one still does a job I use the Cricut program on my laptop to Set up the artwork that I want to make a Stencil out of to start you want to have

A new project opened up then you want to Upload the artwork to the program the Trick to getting clean stencils is to Have high resolution artwork you want to Cut such as a PNG or SVG once it's Uploaded click select and add it to your Canvas next measure with the ruler the Area on the sneaker you want the stencil To be placed and size it accordingly on The program for the toe box I'm going to Put the big web and spider because it's The biggest and best spot for this key Element for the artwork we designed That's going to go on the side panel we Made the human spider name specifically With the Spider-Man font in mind before It's ready to cut I'm going to fuse each Graphic with the square shape so the Machine knows where to cut I'm going to Place the graphic over the square and Select both from there I just click Slice and remove the parts I don't need Now that the program is ready to go I'm Going to set up my Cricket sticky mat And apply the premium vinyl and click The cut button When it comes to a stencil there's two Parts you can play with the positive and The negative for the toe boox we're Going to be laying down the positive Part of the stencil for The Spider and The web essentially leaving The Spider And the web red and for the stencil That's going to go back here the human

Spider we're going to be using the Negative space of the stencil so Everything inside it can be the color That I choose Now using this pick we're Going to do some weeding I'm going to Remove the positive part from the human Spider and the negative part from The Spider and the web stencils are fully Weeded now to apply them onto the Sneakers we're going to be using some Transfer tape to do so we're going to Place it over the stencil then with the Tool you're going to want to press down On the transfer tape to make sure it Picks up the stencil from there you pick It up and apply it onto the shoes very Carefully as I'm doing the step it's a Little bit more trickier than I thought The spider web wraps around the entire Shoe with the Trans paper in the way I'm Going to take this off first and then With my finger lay down the web Carefully all around the Shoe now I'm going to tape off Everything but the stencil areas so we Don't get any pain from the airbrush on Other areas we don't want I'm also going To be using the heat gun and I'm going To go over the entire vinyl to make sure It's nice and flat with the rest of the Leather then with my finger or a metal Object I'm going to press down all over The vinyl to make sure no paint leakage Gets under those areas one thing I

Didn't show you guys is the back on this Back piece I left the red stripe exposed That part is also going to be blue and That's supposed to represent the human Spider's pants we're going to be Focusing on the back first for this Piece we're going to be doing the exact Same gradient I did on the swo to start We're going to be covering up all this Red so we can lay down a white base coat So the blue can be nice and vibrant White paint is down now now on to the Lighter blue we're going to be laying Down a couple of Shades we don't want to Cake on the paint and for the final Color the darker blue we only want to do This part on the top of the human spider We want to create a nice smooth gradient On the back I also laid down a white Base coat but this part is just going to Be solid navy blue for the front area We're going to be laying down some black Paint I'm going to drop the pressure on The compressor to get minimal paint out Of the airbrush in the center where the Spider is I'm going to go heavy on the Black but outside of that on the thin Spiderweb lines really I just want to Get over spray outside of those lines Paint's fully applied it's nice and dry Let's peel off the stencils and the tape I'm going to be using this pig to remove The vinyl first I'm going to grab the Heat gun and warm up the vinyl it peels

Off a lot easier by doing so and it can Prevent the pay from Peeling painting the stencils is Complete now I'm going to show you how To cut out vinyl to iron it onto the Shoe this step is specifically for Shoelaces if you're trying to give it That off-white style or insoles if You're trying to remove the old logo and Replace it with the new one for this Part we're going to be printing out a Spider logo it's going to be the exact Same process All blue tongue from an Air Force one With the red and white tongue tag this Tongue is perfect for this custom let's Get it installed the only thing that's Keeping this tongue in place is a single Stitch line I'm using this xacto knife To cut it off from the inside before I Glue on the blue Tongue I'm using bar super stick to put The tongue in place all you need is a Thin layer of glue on the bottom piece Of the tongue and on the inside of the Shoe once the glue's been applied you Want to wait a good 5 minutes let it Here heat it up and then stick it Together tongue is in place now to fully Lock it in we got to reapply the Stitching right on this line using this Machine tongues are in place paint drops Complete now the last big step is the Finisher there's different approaches

You can do for this step you can apply It with the paintbrush or you can spray It on with the airbrush all those Options work what I like to use is cry Mat finish it's really easy to apply you Just got to go outside and spray it on It's nice and consistent and it holds up The only thing we got to do is tape off The tongue and the sock liner for my cut I'm going to go with the matte finish But you can do any finish you want you Got matte satin semi satin semi gloss Gloss there's all types it's totally up To you what finish you want SP a few Minutes mat finish is all dry let's take Off all the tape now I know from Experience once I remove this tape There's going to be a bunch of residue All over that white Rubber Sole the Easiest way to remove that is using a Glue eraser using this glue eraser I'm Just going to go back and forth create Some friction to remove all the residue Final detail we got a replacement blue Lace with a black Air Force one dubr all Right guys that's going to bring us to An end on this beginner Air Force One Custom I love how they turned out hope You guys learned something and make that LE to do your first custom we're giving Away a ruven or executive kit that comes With everything you need all you got to Do is comment down below what theme you Want to see me do next I'll pick a lucky

Winner to win this kit and I'll do that Theme in a future video I hope you guys Enjoy this video this is Vic Almighty I'll catch you guys next Monday see you Guys